Jen Kao mercedes benz fashion week

Jen Kao Spring/Summer 2012

The Spring/Summer 2012 Jen Kao show opened dramatically with a model wearing a flowery tentacled “Paper Crown Imperial Masque”, an intricate paper fascinator/mesh mask, with a glowing ball of light at her chest.  The mask was created by Paper-Cut-Project designers Nikki Salk and Amy Flurry and was part of the sensory feast that followed. The lighting was warm dusky orange which created a dreamy background.  The rest of collection had a lot of colorful prints in soft swirling hues and checkered patterns in green, blue, orange, pink.  The jewelry included rose gold skeleton earrings and floral pins and headpieces.  Afterwards, we met up with Taiwanese American designer backstage to talk about the inspiration for her Spring/Summer 2012 collection.

How did you come up with your inspiration?
I started developing after a conversation with a friend about lucid dreaming.  Lucid dreams are when you feel like you’re paralyzed.  I used to have these dreams everyday when I was younger.  In these dreams, there are always visitors.  Usually they’re very sinister and make you feel like you’re in peril.  I like to turn negative things into positive things. So this is a romance story where the visitor coming is the love of your life.    And you’re patiently waiting while they’re coming slowly.  You feel intoxicated and paralyzed by how they make you feel. As a backdrop, I went to Alnwick England this summer and went to The Poison Garden.  I saw all these flowers that bordered between something that’s fatal and something that is beautiful.  I love that duality of something that is very dangerous, lustful, and passionate.  So that created the landscape.

How do your ideas come to you?
It just comes.  The poem that I wrote, I wrote six months ago.  I picked the song 6 months ago.  All these wonderful coincidences happened.  Some things happened in my life matched the song.

Where can people buy your line?
 Internationally, New York, LA, Chicago, China, at boutiques.

Designer Jen Kao with parents

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